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Vox Ace
1960s British solid body electric guitar

Two 1963 Vox Ace solid body electric guitars
Two early Vox Ace guitars, a 1962 and a 1963. Although on the surface these guitars look very similar, there are subtle differences; have a closer look at these guitars.

The Ace was in the Vox line from at least 1962; one of numerous solid body guitars produced in the United Kingdom by JMI. It had a model designation V-2-5 or V205. It was equipped with two pickups, initially chrome-covered Vox 1950s/60s single coil pickup (although briefly), then the typical Vox V1 units. Finally these were upgraded to white Vox V2 pickups with individual polepieces.

Early models are characterised by their long headstock (also seen on early Super Ace (three pickup model), Duotone (no tremolo) and Clubman models) but this neck was discontinued most likely by mid/late 1963.

Unlike the better known, and somewhat similar dual-pickup model, the Shadow, which was fitted with the Standard Vox Tremolo, the Ace was fitted with the Ace de Luxe Tremolo. The Ace was a higher end model than the Shadow, and it did have a better neck with a curved rosewood fingerboard, compared to the completely flat neck of the Shadow. It still had no adjustable truss rod though, and (early examples at least) still had a laminate wood body. Later models were made of an unspecified "lightweight hardwood", most likely mahogany or agba.

Vox Ace electric guitar - from the Vox "precision in sound" catalogue, 1964

This is how the Vox Ace was described in the 1964 Vox catalogue 'Precision in Sound'.

Specially selected lightweight hardwood body. Two six-pole pickups, volume control and separate flick-action tone change. Compensating bridge unit incorporated in smooth action tremolo unit. polished, reinforced neck, with rosewood fingerboard. Red, white or sunburst mirror finish.

Despite the description above, other colours were also shipped in small numbers beyond 1964, pale blue for example.

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1965 Vox Ace
1965 Vox Ace

The Vox Ace changed continually throughout the course of it's production; some changes are very subtle indeed, some very much more obvious; see some of these summarised below. Remember all dates are approximate.

  • 1961/62 Vox Ace specifications: pearl-effect scratchplate, Vox 1950s/60s single coil pickup, all screws have slotted heads. Body route suitable for one or two pickups only. Early Ace de Luxe tremolo units are unsprung; no body routing required. Cream and gold control knobs.
  • 1962/63: red finish standard, white single-ply as scratchplate standard, pickups changed to Vox V1 type, usually plain or with early-style (stretched) Vox font. Some scratchplates around this time have 9 screws instead of the standard 8. Typical white UK vox control knobs. Have a look at a late 1962 Vox Ace.
  • 1963 Vox Ace body Early 1963: Cross-head screws standard. Body routes have a wider bridge pickup route to accomodate an extra pickup (as used on the Ace de Luxe). Tremolos are now sprung, requiring a hole under the bridge (see image). Some instrumwnts fitted with black single-ply scratchplates. Have a look at a 1963 Vox Ace
  • Mid/late 1963: complete redesign with new body style, neck, and white Vox V2 pickups with exposed pole-pieces. Body is solid wood rather than laminate. Available in red, white and sunburst finishes. New headstock decals with separate 'Vox' and 'Ace' markings.
  • 1964/65: new thicker 3-ply (white-black-white) scratchplate, metal control knobs. Have a look at a 1965 Vox Ace

Back to the VOX INDEX | comment




US ebay listings

Vintage 1960s Vox Guitar Neck Spitfire.

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60's UK made Vox Ace electric guitar pickguard w/ switch, pots and jack.

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Vintage 1960s Sunburst Vox Hurricane Spitfire Guitar Body

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Vintage 1960s Vox Tremolo Arm Mark VI Spitfire Hurricane Bulldog W Screw & Nut

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Vox 1965 Spitfire Sunburst Electric Guitar Great Condition Almost original HSC

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UK ebay listings

Vintage 1964 VOX DOMINATOR / SHADOW Electric Guitar & Case

Current price: £175.00
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Time left: 25d 7h 22m
Vintage Early Vox Shadow Electric Guitar ~ C.1962

Current price: £99.99
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Vintage 1960s Vox Guitar Tuners Phantom Teardrop Mark VI Spitfire LEFT HANDED

Current price: £67.78
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Time left: 18d 10h 18m
Vintage Vox BRIDGE Phantom Mark VI TearDrop Spitfire Hurricane Meteor

Current price: £105.70
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Time left: 5h 19m
Vintage 1960s Vox Guitar Neck Spitfire.

Current price: £99.46
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Time left: 14d 8h 13m
Vintage 1960s Sunburst Vox Hurricane Spitfire Guitar Body

Current price: £93.24
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Time left: 14d 8h 14m
Vox guitar neck, 1963 (Ace, Super Ace, Clubman, Duotone, Soloist)

Current price: £30.00
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NEW Wampler ACE 30 Overdrive distortion AC Guitar effect pedal Vox

Current price: £149.22
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